Knowing What Expectations to Ignore

Unrealistic expectations can be harmful because they set us up for failure. Do not let that happen to you!

Part Two

Wonder Woman, shattering expectationsSetting realistic expectations about life with a newborn.

I love helping parents plan and prepare for their postpartum period.  Couples make birth plans to help them feel prepared and empowered during their labor and delivery. Planning for your postpartum period can help answer questions and allow parents to feel less anxious for this life change.  Taking the time to talk through what you think is going to happen versus the reality of what is likely to happen is important for this transition. Plan ahead for support or call in support before you feel like you are going to “lose it.” You may not experience all the expectations in the prior blog, or you may experience all of them and more. Setting realistic expectations can help with your postpartum emotions and your overall adjustment to parenting.  It doesn’t have to be BAD or TERRIBLE! Read more

Quick and Easy Father’s Day Gifts for the First Time Dad or Dad-to-be

Father's Day Gifts
Father’s Day Gifts

Looking for a fast and easy Father’s Day gift for the NEW dad or dad-to-be?

Father’s Day is just a few days away!  Do you need ideas that are quick and easy to give to the new dad in your home? One word: PERSONALIZATION

The most precious gifts I treasure from my girls are their homemade gifts.  It does not have to be perfect or expensive because when I look at it, it makes me smile. I have kept tons of colored pictures and drawings and my husband still has drawings in his office from years past. Read more

How to Overcome Unrealistic Expectations in the First Few Weeks of Parenting?

Get to know what your parenting expectations are so when the unrealistic expectations creep in, you can kick them to the curb!

Part One

Unrealistic Expectations

Have you heard that “your expectations determine your reality?” It is so true especially when it comes to having a new baby at home. Your body, daily routines, sleeping, eating, showering and all your activities are going to change.  It will be a time of transitions and adjustment, not just for you but for everybody in your household.  Embrace it! Talk about it and most importantly, believe that you can do it!

When you don’t know, what you don’t know, how do you know what to prepare for?

Setting unrealistic expectations only makes your job as an exhausted parent harder than it has to be. In all my years supporting families I have yet to meet a mom that is not exhausted, does not want to cry or parts of her body are sore at some point in the first week.  It is normal to have ALL these feelings. If you go into parenting with realistic expectations, the early days of parenting don’t seem so bad.

Parents should expect that

Babies:

  • Cry, sometimes a lot
  • Typically do not sleep at night but love to sleep during the day
  • Nurse a lot, possibly 15-20 times in a 24-hour period
  • Prefer to sleep on a person, not by themselves
  • WILL likely pee on by you at some point
  • Go through diapers and clothes like crazy

Moms:

  • May feel like a Mack truck has hit you on day 3 or 4
  • May bleed through your clothes
  • Breast milk may leak through your clothes and all over your bed sheets
  • Happy one minute, sad the next
  • Wish someone else could feed the baby
  • Long for alone time and a HOT shower
  • Dislike night time because you know you are not going to get enough sleep

Dads:

  • Wonder what happened to your partner(emotionally)
  • Utter exhaustion
  • Miss your partner, crave time together
  • Frustrated because you can’t “fix” everything
  • Not sure how to BEST help your partner
  • Feel helpless because you can’t nurse the baby (there are many other things you can do)
  • Are ready to go back to work

Parenting is HARD! Parenting a newborn is overwhelming.

As a postpartum registered nurse, working in a hospital, community health settings and in families homes made me feel like I had a good handle on what “life” would actually be like when I had our first. Ha Ha, I was wrong!  I had years of knowledge and experience plus my husband and I felt as prepared and ready as we could be.  However, knowing she was all our responsibility, made things a tad more overwhelming and scary. Having my own was very different from helping other families adjust and transition.  As an After Baby Consultant, my job is to stay current on all things mom, baby and family related and support parents in their parenting philosophies. I help them feel prepared for the unknowns, shorten their learning curve and give them the support to feel educated, informed and confident.  As a new parent, I learned that all my experiences and knowledge would only take me so far.  I had to rely on my instincts and trust my gut. Thankful for all the wisdom I gained while helping others as it made my transition easier and my expectations more realistic. You can be the best babysitter, nursery worker, auntie or friend, but when it is 2 a.m. and your baby is screaming while the world is sleeping, you realize parenting is HARD!

Appliances and cars come with instructions manuals, so why don’t babies?

You can read and research everything on newborns, but nothing can prepare you for the first night, week and month of life with your baby. The staff (instruction manuals) are with you at the hospital or birth center for the length of time you are there but once you leave, they do not come home with you. You are on your own. That first night home can be exciting, overwhelming, scary and downright exhausting.  Being in your own bed is heavenly but there is NO call light to push when you have questions or need help. You probably will not sleep much and if you do sleep, it will be with one eye open. Learning your baby’s noises and adjusting to their sleeping and feeding takes time, but you WILL get there. You try a lot of trial and error before you find out what works for your baby, then they change it up again. Not all things work with every baby and that is NORMAL too. Keep trying, talk to other parents and trust your gut.

Unrealistic Expectations

Call me today to talk about your postpartum expectations and we will make a plan together.

Check out part 2 on knowing what unrealistic expectations to ignore.

Do I really need life insurance when I need a bigger house and a roomier car?

With all the preparations that come with baby’s arrival, buying life insurance is probably not on your priority list. Maybe it should be?  

LIfe insurance Agent

The end of your pregnancy is nearing and you are excited for your baby’s arrival. You are prepared for the delivery, the nursery is decorated and your bag is packed. Daydreaming about what life will be like with your new son/daughter is happening more frequently. You lay on the couch, flip on the t.v. and see images of children that make you cry. Instinctively you reach down and gently rub your belly, you feel your baby stir inside you. Instant relief. However, the “what if’s” creep up in your mind and you begin thinking about your child and the future…Are you prepared for the “just in case?” Read more

How to talk about potential parenting issues before baby arrives? Part 1

Pregnancy Tips for Parenting Discussions

How to start talking about parenting with your partner before the baby arrives

Part 1

Parenting
Postpartum RN-After Baby Consultant-Breastfeeding-Parenting-Home Safety-Consulting in Tucson

With all the excitement that surrounds your pregnancy; doctors’ appointments, picking out names, creating a registry, setting up the nursery, taking childbirth classes or reading books it is no wonder that parents forget to talk about HOW their lives will be affected after their baby arrives. Parenting starts before the baby arrives.

Read more

How do I get my baby to burp?

How do I get my baby to burp?

Welcome to parenting, the best and most exhausting job ever.  The first few weeks are filled with sleepless nights, feeding, changing diapers, crying, feeding, changing diapers, crying, feeding………..oh and don’t forget about burping in between and after each feed.

A common statement I hear a lot working with families is, “Colleen, I can’t get my baby to burp, what can I do?”  My response is simple, some babies do not always need to burp and some burp automatically without having to burp them. Every baby is different but it is always best to try it and try a few different positions.  It is very common for babies to swallow air when they begin to feed and even more so if they are crying before or during a feed. Read more

Pregnancy and Parenting Advice: Part Two

Pregancy and Parenting Advice In Part Two of this blog, I will discuss some of the topics that solicit advice and help you let the advice giver know that you value their thoughts and want to work together and educate each other for the safest outcomes. You may want to take a more gentle approach with someone who seems truly well-meaning, but a more firm approach with someone who seems to be coming from a place of criticism.

As a parent-to-be or new parent, hearing all the advice can make you feel overwhelmed, confused and often times stressed out.  How do you know what to believe or what advice you should follow? Research is ongoing and constantly changing, so it is hard to stay on top of everything. Times have changed and so have many guidelines/suggestions.  Some well intention advice comes from something that worked real well 20 years ago or even 50+ years ago but is no longer recommended today.  Google is at your fingertips and easy to research anything but be careful about the validity of the sites you visit.  Let’s work together to increase awareness about the postpartum period and how to best support your loved ones. Read more

Unwanted and Unsolicited Pregnancy and Parenting Advice

Unwanted advice

How to Handle Unwanted and Unsolicited Advice

Part One

As soon as you announce that your family is growing, be prepared for advice to start rolling in! From family members to random strangers, everyone has something to say! Some pieces of advice are helpful; some are annoying and others just down right odd.

I wish I could tell you WHY everyone feels the need to dish out advice, maybe it is human nature: people want to share their own experiences with you, they want to prevent you from making the same mistakes or go through what they went through. I think empathy plays a huge role, people feel compelled to help or solve a perceived issue for someone who is in need, especially if they have been in your position.

Hearing all the advice can make parents-to-be and new parents feel incredibly overwhelmed, confused and often times stressed out.  So how do you know what to believe or what advice you should follow? Read more

Scheduling Self-Care

Self-Care

Dictionary.com defines self-care ascare of the self without medical or other professional consultation”

Happy New Year! The hustle of the holiday season has stopped and routines are starting back up again. Some people love to make new year’s resolutions, others do not.  Some people work really hard and accomplish their resolutions and some give up after a few days or weeks. Me, on the other hand, I like to set goals and work towards them. Setting goals pushes me to work hard towards them but allows for LIFE to happen when it needs to and allows me to be guilt free! Read more

Twas the night the baby came home…

One of my favorite family Christmas traditions is either reading or listening to Twas the Night Before Christmas Poem.  I know all too well what the first night home can be like for parents, so I thought I’d try my hand at creating my own comical version.

You’ve dreamed about what the first night home will be like with your new baby since you found out you were pregnant or got the official notice on your adoption and now it is finally here. Let’s face it, parenting can be overwhelming, baby’s don’t come with an instruction handbook and they can’t tell you what they want. Parenting takes strength and determination! Enjoy the adventure.

Twas the night the baby came home and all is a fog

Read more